Cutting People Out of Your Life

There are times when cutting people out of your life is necessary for your own wellbeing. 

Toxic is a word used to describe many things but it can also apply to relationships. In life, you will encounter many people who will resist, threaten, and sabotage your quest for self improvement and personal growth. These are people who will drag you down because they resent seeing progress (of any kind) in others. Cutting people out of your life is a good way to make sure that they won’t affect your emotional and mental well being.

Dealing with a toxic person is a puzzle. You cannot seem to grasp the cause of their behavior, but you can see the effects of their toxic behavior in your life. They can affect everyone’s life around them, not just you. The worst thing about dealing with toxic people is that they can be a family member, a friend, or someone you are in a romantic relationship with. Moreover, toxic relationships can occur at any stage in your life.

Identifying the toxic people in your life and knowing how to manage them so they don’t affect your life is essential to your well being, happiness, and success. It’s also a great first step towards keeping these toxic individuals from sabotaging your personal growth. Once you take care of this step, you must learn how to deal with the emotional process of removing toxic people from your life.

Cutting People Out of Your Life – What Does it Mean?

Before you learn about the steps on how to cut toxic people from your life, first you need to know what this act means. How does cutting toxic people from your life going to impact you emotionally and mentally?

You deserve to be in a healthy and supportive relationship. No one should be forced to deal with toxic people because it does no good to your emotional and mental health. A toxic person is someone who can sabotage your goal of achieving emotional and mental wellness. It is important to distinguish between an individual who is unpleasant to work with or someone you just don’t get along with. Toxic is different because it can threaten your health and your other relationships.

When a person is difficult, you don’t necessarily cut them off. You can give them the silent treatment or keep your interaction with them to a minimum. Cutting people out of your life is when you find that they drain you and make you into a person who you’re not. For example, a toxic person can make you easily angry and irritable when you are normally patient and understanding. It’s because your interaction with someone toxic drains you and brings out the worst qualities in you.

The decision to cut people off is your move to regain control of your life. It means that you have identified the red flags and refuse to be influenced by the negative effects that the toxic behavior of someone brings to your life. It is a long and emotional process, especially when the ones you are cutting off are a family member or a close friend. There is always the risk that you can hurt them emotionally but that is something that you must live with because you owe it to yourself and happiness.

Qualities of Toxic People to Watch out For

So, how do you identify toxic behavior? There are common qualities that are possessed by individuals who are toxic to your life or toxic relationships. Make sure to identify these red flags so you know when it is time to start cutting people from your life.

They want to control you

Toxic people lack control in their own lives. In fact, they might be unhappy with their current circumstances. Therefore, they will try to regain a sense of power by taking control of other people’s lives. This is when they unleash their toxic qualities because they bring the negative aspects of their lives into yours.

For example, they try to influence your decisions in life so that you can think the way they do. They crave control because they lack it in their own lives and it is making them unhappy.

They disregard your boundaries

A toxic person does not recognize boundaries. And even if they do, they disregard it.

This makes communicating with a toxic person a challenge. Even if you have expressed that you want to be treated a certain way, they always find a way to treat you the opposite way. They have no regard for your feelings and emotional bond at all.

They don’t admit mistakes and apologize

This is one of the red flags of toxic behavior. Toxic people never admit to their mistakes. They are so consumed in their own thoughts and lives that they start to believe they are always right. It’s not that they don’t admit mistakes; it’s because they think they can do no wrong.

The worst-case scenario is that aside from refusing to apologize for their mistakes, they blame others for them. There is no accountability for their words or actions.

They victimize themselves

Another tell-tale sign of toxic behavior is when a person plays the victim role. Even if they are the ones who have wronged you, they act like they are the victim in the situation. They will be the first to come up to your other friends about a particular situation so they can convince others that you are the bad guy, not them.

This is another form of manipulation, which they are really good at. It is also their way of gaining sympathy from others.

They take without giving

This is one of the most common qualities of a toxic person. They look at relationships and friendship as a one-way street. Since they only think of themselves, they only want to receive and don’t expect to reciprocate that.

Healthy relationships should entail a balance of giving and taking. This is how you thrive and achieve happiness and personal growth. However, you should be wary when toxic people exhibit generosity. If they give something, they are most likely expecting something in return.

They put others down

A person who is toxic is often insecure about themselves and the things that are lacking in their life. For this reason, they make themselves feel better by putting others down. They are quick to point out your flaws and weaknesses while also being blind to their own faults.

They use your weaknesses are a way to control you. It helps them feel superior to you. For this reason, spending time with a toxic person can feel like you are walking on eggshells all the time. This can be dangerous when it happens to a teenager or someone who is weak in the emotional aspect since they will start to believe these negative projections of themselves.

They’re always right

As mentioned above, someone with toxic behavior will never admit to their mistakes. They have the belief that they cannot do anything wrong. As a result, it is impossible to talk to them because it always ends up in an argument.

They’re selfish

A toxic person only thinks of themselves. They have no care for the welfare of others. It is also no surprise that narcissistic individuals are also toxic. Their only focus is their own benefit, even if it comes at the expense of other people. Toxic individuals have this me-first attitude. The needs of others come secondary to theirs.

Tips for Cutting Off Family Members

Cutting off family members is one of the most challenging ways to handle this situation. Family members are supposed to be with you through thick and thin. However, you must acknowledge the fact that you don’t always get along with family and that they can create a negative impact on your life with their toxicity.

Therefore, a family member is not immune when it comes to distancing yourself from people that are potentially toxic to your life. In fact, this is where toxicity often stems from because the dynamics of a relationship within the family is quite complex.

While difficult, it is important to make a decision that will affect your future. Here are the steps on how you should go about this process.

1. Let them know how you feel.

You owe it to your family members to communicate how you feel about their behavior. Is there anything particular about their behavior that is making you uncomfortable, sad, or depressed? Do you have any suggestions on how you want to be treated?

You must keep open and honest communication with any member of your family that you are having issues with. To be clear, this is not an explanation for your decision but rather an opportunity for them to address your concerns. After all, it is still your family so you have to give them a chance to explain their side of the situation, especially if they are unaware of the effects of their actions or behaviors on you.

It is important that you communicate in a calm manner. Watch how they react to your effort to communicate. If they fight back or become defensive, try not to stoop down to their level. Maintain your focus on what you wanted to achieve by reaching out. If they are not expressing interest in changing their behavior or addressing the issues you’ve raised, you can sever ties with them and move on with your life.

2. Maintain your distance from them.

This can be difficult to do when you are a family because you move within the same circles. However, make an effort to minimize contact with them so that you are not pulled back in. It is also a crucial step as you take back your life.

3. Set boundaries.

You need to build your boundaries and ask them to respect them. Make sure you are stern about these boundaries.

A lot of toxic people will not respond well when you cut them off. Their response would be to fight back. Therefore, it is important that you create as much separation from them as possible.

4. Don’t be pulled by a crisis.

It is very common for a family member who’s toxic to pull you back in by saying that they need your help in times of family emergency. If you are family-oriented, it can be difficult for you to turn the other cheek. However, you can focus on helping those family members that need your help without having to communicate with the toxic individuals again.

They will use whatever excuse they can to regain their power. Do not give them the opportunity to do so, not even during times of crisis.

5. Promote positivity in your life.

Shower your life with positivity by spending time with people who bring you joy and happiness. These are the kinds of people that you want in your life, not the toxic ones that sabotage your growth and happiness.

Look for friends who are supportive of your life goals and ambitions. Find a partner who understands you and won’t take advantage of you. You know when you are with the right people if you enjoy their company and you are not emotionally burdened by their presence.

6. Be okay with forgiveness.

You might be tempted to seek out revenge or build hatred for another person or a family member who’s toxic. However, you are not doing yourself any favor by harboring ill feelings toward them.

You must learn to let go of the negative emotions that are associated with these people once you cut them from your life. This would be possible by learning to forgive them. Make sure to not forget what they’ve done though so you don’t end up falling into their trap again. By forgiving them, you give yourself the opportunity to have peace of mind.

Tips for Cutting Off Toxic Relationships

Leaving a toxic relationship is one of the hardest things to do. Many people are so invested in their romantic relationship that they fail to see the red flags and the negative behavior of their partners, whether it is a boyfriend/girlfriend or a spouse. While it is normal for any relationship to go through ups and downs, it’s different when your partner is constantly draining you emotionally and mentally.

There are different manifestations of toxic abuse in a relationship. It could be physical, verbal, sexual, emotional, and financial. However, not all toxic relationships are worth saving.

Here are some tips to help you when dealing with a toxic relationship and how to remove them in your life:

• Don’t give them the silent treatment. If you do this, it will only make the other person want to reach out to you even more. Make it clear from the start that you are removing yourself from the relationship and that you no longer want them to be a part of your life.

• Block them on social media or any form of communication. Do not give them the chance to contact you in any way or else they will try to manipulate you once again.

• End the denial. Admit that you’re in a toxic relationship and that it is damaging your life.

• Acknowledge your emotions. The more you deny them, the more you are unable to process your emotions. Facing those emotions head-on will give you a chance to overcome them. You can even write them down if it helps you cope.

• Treat yourself. Focus on pampering yourself because once you feel good on your own, it is a positive step forward. You will no longer seek validation from others to make you whole.

Tips for Cutting Off People from Your Social Circle

Not all friends are good for your mental health. Some of them can bring you into toxic relationships without even realizing it.

Aside from family members and your partners in life (either a boyfriend or a spouse), it is also possible to cut off friends. A toxic friendship is easy to identify if you know what signs to look for. Once you identify these signs, it’s important to remove them from your social circle as their behavior makes you feel uncomfortable or does not add value to your social life.

How do you identify a toxic friendship? And when is it time to remove them from your social circle? Here are some red flags to watch out for in your friendship.

1. There is an imbalance in giving and taking. This is one of the most common characteristics of toxic relationships. Toxic people love to take and be cared for but they are unwilling to do the same to others. A healthy friendship should be a balance of giving and taking, just like in a romantic relationship.

2. They make you feel guilty for who you are. A great friend must encourage you to showcase your individuality and celebrate what makes you unique. Friends who are toxic to you will instead make you feel guilty for your traits and emphasize them as “flaws”.

3. They bring out the worst in you. You know you’re in a toxic friendship when your friend brings out your worst qualities. They are a negative influence on your life. They promote bad habits rather than focus on activities that foster self esteem and self improvement. Spending time with them can have a negative impact on your life, which is why you need to cut someone who does this to you.

4. They drain you. You know when you spend time with a friend and you always feel like they’re such a burden to deal with? This is a pure example of toxic behavior, which is why you need to remove them from your social circle. You don’t need them in your life anymore because you are better off without this type of friendship.

Now that you realize that you are in a friendship with a toxic person, what do you do next? You don’t need to cut people off immediately, especially if it’s a friend who you’ve known for a long time. Think of ways to salvage your friendship first.

Offer your friend a second chance. You couldn’t hurt your friendship through open and honest communication. Start a dialogue with this friend or friends so they are aware of their toxic behavior and how it is making you feel. You cannot force someone to change their behavior, but it’s worth a try – and for you to see if they make an effort.

Toxic people love to manipulate others. Hence, you must be careful to not allow yourself to get manipulated into thinking that they will change their behavior. But be sure to keep an eye out for repeated patterns of their behavior.

The next step is to set boundaries. If you want to maintain that friendship, you have to understand that it takes two individuals working together. Healthy relationships do not happen overnight, but if they do not how to respect your boundaries then there is no point in trying to fix the relationship.

To sum it up, there is no point being stressed over trying to keep a friend in your life. Friendships should help you be happy. If it isn’t doing that for you and it becomes increasingly difficult to be with this person, cutting toxic people is the next logical step.

Benefits of Removing Toxic People in Your Life

Would you want to spend time with someone who is actively on a quest to diminish your progress in your life? The goal of healthy relationships is to nurture your individual lives and to make way for happiness. If this does not apply to you, you must be aware of toxic relationships in your life because these could be sabotaging your happiness.

Below are some of the benefits that make it worth the emotional process of cutting people out of your life worth it.

1. It is beneficial for your mental health.

Dealing with toxic people can be extremely stressful. If you want to remove stress from your life, you should also be cutting toxic people from your life.

When there is too much toxicity around you, it can drain you as you feel like you’re always living on the edge. Toxic individuals can be unpredictable. Thus, it can feel like a burden living with them because you don’t know what kind of response you can get from them.

When you cut people off that are toxic to your life, you ease that burden off your shoulders. You are free to act like you normally would because you don’t always have to guard yourself against them. Overall, you have peace of mind and better emotional well being.

2. Your life is more peaceful.

Whether the toxic person is a family member, a spouse, or a friend, cutting people out of your life can mean you no longer have to deal with the fighting. Toxic people thrive in argument and chaos. They also bring these into your life, which can be a bad thing.

If you want to live in peace and be satisfied with your own life, it is important to get rid of these toxic people from your life.

3. It makes room for healthy relationships in your life.

When your time is consumed by toxicity and toxic relationships, you don’t have room to welcome positivity into your life. This is why it is important to cut people off when they offer no benefit to your life. This allows you to focus on enriching your life with friends that encourage you to become better or a significant other who supports your ambitions in life, not put you down.

4. You will regain your confidence.

Whether you admit it or not, toxic behavior from others can affect your confidence. Many people dealing with toxic relationships often lose their self esteem. This is not your fault. Toxic individuals like to manipulate others and make them feel inferior because that is how they take control of their life and relationship.

Therefore, removing toxic people from your life is a good start to regaining your confidence and building it back again. You can also focus on building your relationship skills and becoming better as an individual.

5. It fosters emotional growth.

Cutting people out of your life is a tough emotional process. No matter how toxic the person is, the transition is never easy. However, making this important decision can help you grow emotionally. It makes you more resilient and you can grow as an individual. As the saying goes, it’s the difficult decisions that make you grow as a person.

The Harm of Cutting People Off Too Quickly

If you are dealing with a toxic person in your life, you might have experienced the benefits listed above by deciding to cut people off. However, there is also a danger to immediately cutting people instead of looking at it in the big picture.

Experts insist that humans are very insightful and quick to identify toxic behavior from others. The downside to this is that it could make you blind to your own fault. As a result, you may become subjective because you only see the situation from your lens and it might not always be what reality is.

Your perception of toxic people might be tainted by your judgment of them or your personal bias. It might not necessarily reflect the truth.

Thus, mental health experts suggest that you take a step back before you cut someone from your life. Focus on the facts rather than on your feelings and perceptions toward the other person. Do not give in to the initial impulse of untangling toxic relationships.

Use this opportunity to pause and reflect on your own behavior. Are you the one who’s toxic? It’s a great opportunity to work on your relationship skills, too.

Coping After You Cut People Off

Once you have cut people off, how do you cope with the emotions of losing them in your life? You will feel some guilt, grief, or a combination of these things. There are ways that you can process your emotions in a healthy way.

Here are some of the tips that will help you cope after cutting people out of your life.

1. Surround yourself with healthy relationships

Healthy relationships can be in the form of supportive friends or those family members who’ve been loving to you. Whatever it is, stick to that and get more of them in your life so that you can thrive and be happy.

There is no point in dwelling over the fact that you’ve lost people in your life because of their toxicity. You need to celebrate the fact that there is room for more relationships that will add to your life.

2. Set boundaries for yourself

Use this chance to re-examine your personal boundaries and what types of behavior you allow (and do not allow). By being clear about these boundaries, you will know when someone is being toxic in your life and you can sever ties with them before they wreak havoc in your life.

3. Create a safe space

A safe space is anywhere where you are free to express yourself without fear of being judged or put down as toxic people would do. You can foster it on your own or find them in others. Either way, you should always keep a close eye on the tell-tale signs of toxic behavior so that you can eliminate them right away.

4. Make self-care a priority

Focus on yourself. Do what makes you happy. It could be pursuing a new hobby or doing something that you enjoy such as rock climbing, hiking, or traveling. Engaging in things you love doing will help regain your confidence and make you feel empowered about your life choices.

5. Accept the situation

You must be able to accept the situation as it is and that you simply have no control over other people’s behavior. Just like the tip above, all you can do is focus on yourself and become better.

6. Don’t look for closure

It is common for most people to seek closure in a relationship after it has ended. However, you don’t have to do that with a toxic person. The moment you decide that they are toxic to you, they have no point being in your life. Hence, don’t waste your time trying to find or give them closure.

Final Thoughts

The most dangerous people are often the ones that are closest to you. It becomes difficult to identify toxic relationships because you are so used to spending time with these people that you become oblivious to the signs.

However, toxicity is contagious and you want to stop it before it spreads. It is a painful and emotional process that you must go through but cutting people off could be your salvation. Instead of feeling guilty for cutting them off, you should focus on the fresh start that is given to you to grow and find true happiness.

FAQs on Cutting People Out of Your Life

Is it healthy to cut someone off?

It’s a difficult decision but it is sometimes necessary. There will come a time in your life when the behavior of a person no longer benefits your life, and can even cause harm. For your own good, it is better to cut this person from your life so that you can focus on doing what is best for you and those relationships that matter.

Should I cut this person out of my life?

Make sure to refer to the list above of the qualities possessed by toxic people. This will enable you to distinguish when someone is no longer good for you. If you feel emotionally drained, devalued, deceived, and manipulated, then you should cut this person off your life, even if it is other family members or part of your social circle.

What does it mean to cut someone out of your life?

Cutting people out of your life means that you can regain control of your life and you choose to focus on the positive things. You no longer want to deal with the negativity that this person brings to your life, as well as those around you.

When you should cut someone off?

Timing is crucial when removing toxic people from your life. You can start cutting people off if they make you feel sad, or depressed, and they affect your mental health in a negative way. Don’t wait too long because they could ruin your relationships, if not your life.

How can I be okay with cutting people off?

It is never easy to cut people off. No one wants to go through this emotional ordeal. It becomes increasingly difficult when it is someone you have spent many years with or family members. You have to acknowledge that it is something that you have to do for your own benefit and to make your life better, or have some peace of mind.

It is also important to know that this is a process. You might feel hurt or the person you cut off will be hurt, too. However, do not feel like you owe them an explanation, especially if you have reached out to them about their toxic behavior but they refuse to do something about it.

Maintain your distance from them so that they will no longer be able to take control of your life again. If you have difficulty coping, it is a good idea to talk to a therapist about it. They can help you cope with your emotions.

What is the first step in cutting someone off?

The first step is to recognize that you are dealing with the behavior of a toxic person. Unless you recognize the signs, you will turn a blind eye to their toxic ways. It is important that you recognize whether your relationship with someone is healthy or not.

Lucius Nothing

Lucius has been slinging tarot cards professionally since 2014. He’s taken the tarot to places most wouldn’t think of: His best-known patrons include Torture Garden, The Dark Circus Party, Handel & Hendrix, A Curious Invitation and The Candlelight Club, where he has been resident tarot reader for the past half-decade. His writing on divination, magic and creativity has been published in Sabbat Magazine and on Medium.

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